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Summary

By the good offices of Riptide Publishing, KJ Charles' new entertainment:

Wanted, a Gentleman, or Virtue Over-Rated.

The grand romance of Mr. Martin St. Vincent - a merchant with a mission. Also a problem, Mr. Theodore Swann - a humble scribbler and advertiser for love.

Act the first: the offices of the Matrimonial Advertiser, London, where lonely hearts may seek one another for the cost of a shilling.

Act the second: a pursuit to Gretna Green (or thereabouts) featuring a speedy carriage, sundry rustic, a private bedchamber.

In the course of which are presented romance, revenge, and redemption, deceptions, discoveries, and desires - the particulars of which are too numerous to impart.

©2017 KJ Charles (P)2017 Riptide Publishing

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Chris
  • 14-09-17

A ridiculously good audio book

What made the experience of listening to Wanted, a Gentleman the most enjoyable?

The voice acting in this was so above par and complimented the great storytelling perfectly.

Who was your favorite character and why?

Martin St. Vincent. Man, he was just so well written. With his whole background as a slave, coupled with his mixed emotions about that time and his owners, he just really stood out in this book.

Have you listened to any of Greg Patmore’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

This is the first audio book of his that I've read. It was phenomenal, though.

Any additional comments?

While I have to say that I loved the ebook version of this story, it has got nothing on the audio book. If you combine the great writing style of K.J. Charles and the highly enjoyable voice narration of Greg Patmore, you were bound to have a hit. But I never expected just how well they would compliment each other and take this story past what individually they could have been.

Up first, let’s just get this out of the way–as in, come on I just wanna talk about this!–the story.

Loved the whole premise of this book. It basically takes one of my favorite historical-tropes, the whole running away to get married thing, and turns it on its head so instead of being with the elopers, we are with the chasers. Thought this was very cool, because it is not a part of the trope we get to see very often, but it also just probably one of the few ways you can have this kind of story with two dudes in that time period.

On top of all that goodness you have some excellent writing in regards to both Theo and Martin’s pasts. They are certainly different in some significant ways, but I also loved the parts where they kinda mirrored each other and how that helped bridge the pretty big gap between them. Also, darn good writing in regards to Martin’s time as a slave. I really liked the mixed emotions that came out here in this story. How he feels–rightly–enraged at what was done to him, but also guilty that he was relieved that by some standard it was not the worse fate a slave could have had. But then how dearly he hates that guilt, that forced gratitude he is told to feel. He has a whole bundle of issues about his past, and I liked how it balanced all that emotional turmoil and made it work together to make a complex, but very relatable character.

As I stated up top of this review, I was already a hug fan of this story when I got my hands on this audio book. But there was just something about this audio version that really turned it up a notch.

Most of that rest in the hands of the narrator, Greg Patmore. Man, what a voice. Not only is it incredibly easy to listen to, but just the way he used it to bring out the very best in these characters. When Martin spoke, I could easily see and feel his stiff baring and rigid control. With Theo there was a bit more slipperiness to it, something a bit smooth, like this was a man who knew how to bend around rules to get what he wanted. It never went too overboard, though, and there was always something inherently likable about him.

The way I instantly felt these characters when they spoke, the ease at which I got caught up in the story, are why I loved this audio book so much. It took something that I already felt was good and set out to enhance it in any way possible. A lot of the time having someone else come in and try to replace the character voices in your head, can be a bit jarring. Yet when I was listening to this, all I could think was this was how they supposed to sound. Theo ended sounding a lot different than what I originally had in my own head, but in the best of ways. Narrators who can capture characters that well are worth their weight in coffee.

To wrap this up I just wanna say how deeply I enjoyed this story, both in and out of audio. And I was thrilled to find out that this is one of those stories that it is as enjoyable, if not more so, on the second read. Because finding all the subtle hints that you might have missed on the first read through is great. I think when I read this book I ended up giving it five stars, which is a bit disappointing because I that means I can’t bump up the rating to reflect how I feel for the audio. So I’m going to call this 5+ stars and a thoroughly stupendous audio version of an already great story.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • A T
  • 28-03-18

Different from my norm, but I really enjoyed it

When this e-book first released, I skipped it because historical romances aren’t at the top of my list of must-read genres. However, I heard so much praise from readers who don’t normally read this trope that I added Wanted, A Gentleman to my to-read list after all. Once the audiobook released, I figured now was the time. Overall, I found the premise and characters incredibly unique and loved the sprinkling of fun moments and humor in a well-told story.

While I did end up loving it, I’ll admit I had my doubts at the start of the book and wasn’t quite sure how to take the characters, specifically Theodore Swann. The narrator was new to me, and though his accent, pronunciation, and performance fit the book’s time period quite well, it took me a bit to get used to the rhythm and language. I suspect this was somewhat due to the quirky characters, as well as it being a case of me being a bit out of my reading comfort zone. However, as the plot unfolded, I found myself very intrigued by the characters, their backstories, and the current events that thrust Theodore and Martin together. Even better, the book offered plenty of surprises that kept things interesting and left me eager to see how it all came together, or more precisely how it fell apart. For a relatively short book, Miss Charles packed a surprising amount of depth into the story and character development. I also really liked the brisk but measured pacing and the witty dialogue, which kept me engaged and even laughing at times. This was definitely a well-rounded book that I’ll listen to again.

Although I wish I hadn’t hesitated quite so long to read Wanted, A Gentleman, I am quite happy to have listened to the audiobook version because the narrator’s performance made the author’s characters and writing shine. I’d definitely recommend this title, even if you don’t typically read historical romances.

*Reviewed for Alpha Book Club*

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • BR
  • 30-11-17

KJ Charles does it again!

Shorter than her other books, Wanted, a Gentleman still hits all of KJ Charles strengths. An opposites attract romance, a strong storyline and some thoughtful emotional development of characters come together in her inimitable style. The narrator has good flow and each character's voice is distinct. What always stands out in her books is that the main characters are not "perfect" neither physically or as people. There are flaws, average looks and complex personal histories that make the attraction and emotional connections forged between characters deeply satisfying. If you like a little depth to your m/m romances, you will like this author.

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Kd
  • 17-09-17

Great word-spinner

I liked many things about this tale. The glaring exception was when the author referred to the black character as a "specimen." This was especially concerning in light of the racial issues present in the story, which were dealt with forthrightly and without "white-washing." Still, referring to any person--especially a member of a group considered subhuman, an animal, etc. then AND now--as a "specimen" shows ignorance, callousness or a complete disregard for the humanity of that person or group. I enjoyed the story enough to just put it to ignorance. I hope it won't occur in the author's writings again. You do better when you know better.
I appreciate the author's upfront way of dealing with slavery only as it pertained to Martin and never preaching about the institution, itself, or slaveholders and supporters. Talk of slavery was kept within the context of the story & its characters, while still showing the nature of the atrocious practice; that aspect was well-done. Now the author needs to attend more closely to words used. The issue of being gay in the 19th century was addressed in like fashion. It was great watching the relationship between Theo Swan (poor white man) and Martin St. Vincent (wealthy black man) develop. It occurred organically and without complete ease. Their relationship struggle was authentic even if a bit easily resolved. Sex also happened at the "right" time; it was much later. It occurred in the form of 1-2 acts of oral sex late in the story, and intercourse didn't occur until the end. There was a bit of humor & a little reveal which added to the tale.

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars
  • VHB
  • 13-02-18

Ok

This a good storie , the MCs were great,
But the storie could have been better
Their romance was not that romantic at all
The back storie just did not hold Me, and the little twist ,
did not help me to like their romance even more also to many excuses. The Main characters were not mached well.
This is an ok listen for me not one I truly loved

0 of 1 people found this review helpful